Tuesday, April 30, 2013



Transportation in Panama is a complicated issue.  If you live in or near any city of size (except Panama City) ‘getting around’ becomes much simpler.  Taxis, buses and being biped will put you most anywhere you wish to go.  Public transportation is better in Panama than most parts of the USA or Canadian West. 

The streets and highways of Panama exceed those of neighboring Costa Rica, but are still substandard compared to the USA & Canada. 

I used public transportation for the first few years I was in Chiriquí.  I lived 6 miles from the center of town.  Ingress and egress wasn’t a problem until I had a load; like groceries. One can reach almost any spot in Panama by public transportation; EVENTUALLY!

Typically, the cobra (fare) across David in a bus is 35 cents.  A taxi will charge $2.50 for the same distance.

Unless you are an undercover drug agent, driving in Panama will be the most dangerous thing you will ever do.  Without a doubt! FUBAR describes Panama City in regards to driving.  I was just there last week; they are building a subway, extending the coastal strip, and a hundred other building projects. Recently they eliminated all of the ‘Diablo rojos’ and replaced them with a metro bus system.  Talk about disorganized.  Wow!  PC will always suffer from Extreme--Fubar! https://www.youtube.com/watch? It’s pretty, tho!

David and the adjoining communities have a population of around 150,000 people.  The Pan-American Highway cuts through our town.  We have six stoplights in the entire province (350,000 people)!  When I arrived here 10 years ago…they had none.


It’s only been since 2009 that I played with publishing any of my novels on e-books.  Played is the operative word in that sentence. My first efforts were quite lame and amateurish. Not the stories; most of them had already been published.  It was the formatting, covers, and definition of my readership.  I kept learning and trying new ideas; some lifted – some created. The money wasn’t important as it went directly into an account for Nutri Hogar, a charity I help as much as possible. 

Several of my friends read my work and did some research for me.  I was gifted several e-books about e-books. (I believe they were trying to tell me something.)

I tried various “professionals” and was across the board disappointed with their performance; especially in the editing and formatting.  I kept paying and received poor quality performance. The formatting problems I could spot.  The editing and proofreading – no way. (most writers cannot spot their own errors or typo’s.)

I suffered through the criticisms and bad reviews. (Why would someone down rate a writer for typo’s? My opinion is that these people have NEVER achieved anything of merit in their lives!)

EUREKA!  I crossed paths with a formatting guy on twitter who advertised ‘don’t pay unless you’re 100% satisfied’.  I used him and now can’t do without his services. He put me on to a good proofreader and editor and now all my recent novels (the last 6) and a lot of my previous works are being PROFESSIONALIZED. I have 12 novels of which six have been totally reformatted, proofed, and edited.  The other six are reformatted and in the queue to be proofed and edited. My two BIG novels are scheduled to be republished within the next sixty days. Look for an announcement within a week.  I’m going to take my writing to the next level. 

Taxi, bus and other commercial drivers for the most part are poorly trained, stupid, and inconsiderate. John Q. Citizen, the average Panamanian, consist of a high percentage first generation drivers. Most gringos’ have a dash cameras to protect themselves in case of an accident.  

Owning a vehicle is not cheap. Also, vehicles of any model are more expensive in Panama.  Fuel prices are set by the government and vary up or down every two weeks. Right now, diesel is hovering just below $4.00 a gallon; gas a few cents higher. I could cover a variety of do’s and don’ts regarding driving in Panama; specifically in Chiriquí.  Perhaps I’ll make a separate post in the future.  

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